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Foundation & Bernd Zimmer

The STOA169 Foundation

The charitable STOA169 Foundation is the responsible body and operator of the columned hall. Founded in November 2016, it is held in trust by the Bernd Zimmer Art Foundation.

Together with donors and sponsors, it is in charge of land acquisition for, development, preliminary work and building, as well as the realisation, of the artists’ columns. Bernd Zimmer is the chairperson of the STOA169 Foundation’s eight-member board of trustees.


Board of trustees

Bernd Zimmer (donator and chairman)
Felicitas Betz (vice-chairwoman)
Egbert Appel
Peter Gartiser
Regina Hesselberger-Purrmann
Franziska Leuthäußer
Hanno Wentzler
Pola Zimmer


Financing of STOA169 is shared by donors, sponsors and supporters, and also through subsidies from Kulturfond Bayern. 

In accordance with the underlying philosophy of this artistic project, i.e. the bringing together of various different cultures under one roof for a common goal, its implementation should not be supported by one or more major donors, but rather by a group of individual donors and supporters. Just as the columned hall and its artists will map a cosmos of contemporary art, we are correspondingly searching for funders, patrons and donors who, through their undertaking and commitment, wish to implement the power of this idea and produce a lasting testimony to our age.

We are searching for patrons, donors and supportive friends to aid with STOA169: for a one-off donation of €69,000, private individuals and businesses can become patrons of a column; with a one-off subsidy of €16,900, contributors guarantee the ongoing maintenance and running costs of the project. Notwithstanding, any and all donations from our supporters and friends are most welcome as are, naturally, larger grants and endowments.

As of 23rd November 2016, the STOA169 Foundation is officially recognised by the Garmisch-Partenkirchen Revenue Office as a charitable, non-profit organisation and is thus authorised to issue receipts for tax-deductible donations.

If so desired, funders, patrons and donors can have their names listed on a commemorative plaque in the entrance area. They will also be invited to all key events, such as the ground-breaking ceremony, the opening, artists’ talks as well as guided tours.

The project’s initiator, Bernd Zimmer, and the STOA169 team are available for further information.

Become a sponsor Support STOA169

STOA169 Stiftung
Kirchplatz 2
82398 Polling


Bernd Zimmer, born in Planegg in 1948, is an internationally renowned and award-winning painter who became known as a co-founder of Berlin’s “Heftige Malerei”.

The STOA169 is Bernd Zimmer’s idea of a comprehensive work and at the same time a conceptual work that celebrates the visual arts in all their forms. At the same time, it unites essential influences that have influenced the artist’s life and work. In addition to an intense experience of nature, his greatest sources of inspiration are journeys through all parts of the world. It is no wonder that someone who constantly crosses borders finds it difficult to overestimate the differences between cultures. Zimmer emphasizes what cultures have in common, celebrating the diversity of the same and its different forms. The idea of uniting works of art from all over the world under one roof developed some 30 years ago as part of a journey to the shrines of the Hindu religion in southern India.

Bernd Zimmer was long established at that time: The trained publisher and later book designer decided to become a painter during a journey through Mexico and the South of the United States of America. Together with Rainer Fetting, Helmut Middendorf, Salomé and other artists, the philosopher and religious scholar founded the “Selbthilfegalerie am Moritzplatz” (selp-help-gallery) in Berlin in 1977. There, under the title “Heftige Malerei”, the artists exhibited colorful, expressive paintings through which they were to go down in art history as “Neue Wilde”.

In 1979 Bernd Zimmer received a scholarship from the Karl Schmidt Rottluff Foundation, and in the early eighties he spent two years in Rome at the invitation of Villa Massimo. His work is recorded in numerous books and catalogues, especially the catalogue of works by Bernd Zimmer – Bilder auf Leinwand shows the painter’s artistic development.

Bernd Zimmer has lived since 1984 in Polling, a village in Upper Bavaria shaped by monastic life and agriculture, but also by artists. He works in his home town and also runs studios in neighbouring Oberhausen and Emilia-Romagna. With the STOA169, Bernd Zimmer’s artistic work culminates in a synaesthetic, walk-in work of art that brings together a moment of international art history for future generations under one roof – in harmony with nature.

Further information on Bernd Zimmer can be found at: www.berndzimmer.com